Who owns Vans? – Owners, aquisitions, and Brands

Who owns Vans?

Who owns Vans? – Vans is an apparel company based in Costa Mesa, California, United States. The company is known for manufacturing shoes (particularly skateboarding shoes) and related apparel. The company has also been a long-time sponsor of snowboarding, surfing, BMX, and motocross teams. The company, however, has primarily sponsored the vans annual Warped Tour, which is a traveling rock festival. The company has sponsored the festival from 1996 to 2019. So, who owns Vans? In 1966 in Anaheim, California, Vans was founded by shoe manufacturer Paul Van Doren and his brother James Van Doren along with Gorden C. Lee. The first store opened by the trio was named The Van Doren Rubber Company. The company manufactured shoes and sold them to the buyers directly. By 1984, the company had grown popular among the buyers, which led to a rise in the production of counterfeit Vans in the market. As a result, the company lowered its shoe prices to increase its sales when the number of knock-off Vans in the market was constantly increasing. The Vans eventually filed a bankruptcy suit to deal with the growing counterfeits. 

Paul Van Doren and Gorden C. Lee in 1988 sold the Vans to the McCown De Leeuw & Co. a banking firm for $74.4 million. The manufacturers of the counterfeit vans were apprehended by the United States and Mexico officials in 1989, eventually ceasing the production and sales of knock-off Vans. Jasper Lutwama and Aiden Vryenhoek later in the same year decided to improve the company, restoring the ethics and the vision of Vans. The company thrived in sales after the restoration and expanded internationally. The company was renamed Vans, Inc., and the company was made a publicly held company in 1991 with a share on NASDAQ for $14. The shares of the company could be purchased freely by people on the stock exchange markets. 

Owners – Who owns Vans?

In 2004, the company merged with VF Corporations, an American footwear company based in Denver, Colorado. The corporation now owns Vans, Inc.

VF Corporations

VF Corporation is an apparel and footwear company founded in 1899 as Reading Glove and Mitten Manufacturing Company in Reading, Pennsylvania. The company was founded by John Barbey and a few investors who started with a factory of 30-meter-squares, leased at $60 per month and a sum of $11,000. The company expanded into manufacturing silk lingerie in 1913. The company was renamed from ‘Reading Glove’ to ‘Schuylkill Silk Manufacturing,’ and the company’s lingerie line was branded as ‘Vanity Fair.’

The company later went public in 1951, changing the name of the company to ‘Vanity Fair Mills.’ In 1969, Vanity Fair Mills procured the H.D. Lee Company (now known as Lee), changing the company’s name once again. The company was now named VF corporations, which is also the current name of the company. The company has since acquired several companies and expanded over several countries in the world.

VF Corporation’s Acquisitions

In 1982 VF corporations had made a profit of $15 million by the sales of $184 million. The company bought Blue Bell Inc. in 1986 for $762 million and then later added companies like Wrangler, Rustler, Jantzen, JanSport, and Red Kap to the corporation, making VF corporation the world’s largest publicly held clothing company. VF Corporation later grew to be the world’s largest Jeans manufacturers, making for about 25% of the markets globally. VF corporation acquired the outdoor recreation products company, The North Face in 2000 along with Belgium-based American lifestyle company Eastpak. The company went on to acquire companies like Kipling, Napapijri, and Vans in 2004. 

Kipling is a Belgian accessories manufacturing company that manufactures handbags, totes, luggage, etc. Napapijri is an Italian casual wear brand based in Aosta, Italy. The brand manufactures high-quality clothing for men, women, and children, best known for Skidoo Jacket. Vans, an American footwear brand based in California, is best known for its classic skateboarding shoes. In January 2007, after selling their lingerie line to the company Fruit of the Loom, VF corporations purchased an American luggage manufacturer, Eagle Creek. And later in February, they procured the American casual wear brand Majestic Athletic. VF Corporation acquired ‘7 for all Mankind’ and ‘Lucy Activewear’ for $885 million in July 2007.


VF Corporation, under its umbrella, has several apparel and accessory brands. Some of these brands are listed as follows.

VF corporation’s workwear brands:

  • VF Solutions
  • Walls
  • Red Kap
  • Dickies
  • Bulwark Protective Apparel
  • Horace Small
  • Kodiak

VF corporation’s sports and casual wear brands:

  • Vans
  • Napapijri
  • Eagle Creek
  • Eastpak
  • The North Face
  • Supreme
  • SmartWool
  • Timberland
  • Altra
  • JanSport
  • Icebreaker etc.

More About Vans – Who owns Vans?

Vans Logo

The original logo of the company was designed in Costa Mesa, California. The logo was a skateboard drawn by the then-president of the company, James Van Doren’s son Mark Van Doren at the age of 13. Mark had intended to paint the design on his skateboard. However, the design was soon seen on the heel tabs of early Vans skateboard shoes. James Van Doren had been inspired to manufacture the skateboard shoes to acknowledge and appreciate his son’s interest in skateboarding. The “Off the Wall” logo of Vans made its first appearance in 1976. Off the wall was slang often used among the skateboarders as they would do jumping tricks in empty pools. Vans #36 were inspired by skateboarders. The design included Vans Sidestripe and soon became popular as the Old Skool design. The new logo of the company was released on its 50th anniversary in 2016. 

Sponsorship of Events

Vans have been active sponsors of several up-scale events in the United States. The company has actively sponsored and supported the Warped Tour, better known as Vans Warped Tour, since 1999. Vans have also been the sponsor of the US Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach, California, since 2014. 

  1. Warped Tour

Better known as The Vans Warped Tour, the Warped Tour is a traveling Rock Tour that tours all of the United States, also including a few stops in Canada. The Warped Tour is America’s largest traveling music festival and is also America’s longest-running music tour festival. The Vans are the main sponsors of the tour. Warped Tour was founded by Kevin Lyman, an alternative rock artist who started the tour as an electric rock festival. The tour, however, also includes acts from other genres such as punk rock, grunge, pop music, etc. Other than Vans, who are the major sponsors of the tour, the Warped Tour is also sponsored by technological companies such as Apple computers, Samsung, Cingular Wireless, etc. Warped Tour has also helped raise several million dollars for organizations like Keep a Breast Foundation, a non-profit organization that works for breast cancer awareness and its treatment; Invisible Children, Earth Echo and Music Saves Lives. 

  1.  US Open Surfing

US Open of Surfing is a surfing competition organized for a week at Huntington Beach, California. It is a part of the qualification process for the World Surf League. Owned by International Management Group (IMG), a global sports company, since 2000, the US Open of Surfing is one of the world’s biggest surfing tournaments. Vans have been one of the sponsors of the tournament since 2014. 

Careers at Vans

Vans expect their employees to be fun-loving and dedicated individuals who can look after the customers and create an overall satisfying experience. In addition, vans seek the qualities of individuality and originality in their employees. Vans hire part-time sales associates in the United States, Canada, and also Puerto Rico. The management positions are available for applications only when the vacancies are available. 

How to Apply?

  1. Visit the careers page at Vans, Inc.’s official website. 
  2. Select the regions that you wish to apply at, US, Canada, or Puerto Rico
  3. Select the job that you are interested in applying for.
  4.  After selecting the region click ‘Apply Now.’
  5. Filter the results according to your location, job category, or job type (full-time/part-time).
  6. Select the jobs you want to apply for.
  7. Click “Apply Now”.
  8. Log in or create your account at The Vans.
  9. Fill in your log-in details.
  10. Quick apply. You can also upload your resume.
  11. Fill in the necessary information about yourself. This includes:
    • Your first name
    • Your last name
    • Address
    • City
    • State
    • Postal Code
    • Phone Number
    • Referral (how you heard about the job or the vacancies)
  12. Click ‘Next’ to proceed on to the next section of the form
  13. My Experience – provide the details of your previous employment, educational qualification, and any other details regarding your work experience.
  14. Check if all mandatory requirements are filled and then submit the form.

Benefits and Salary at The Vans

The average salary at Vans is about $55,000 a year for an assistant store manager. The Retail sales associates get paid about $24 to $27 an hour, while the customer service employees make about $18 to $20 an hour. The Employees at Vans, Inc., get several employee benefits. These include health care benefits that include dental, vision, and medical. In addition, the company provides the employees with life insurances along with access to onsite gyms and free fitness programs. The company also provides the employees with personal development planning programs that include career, leadership, education assistance, etc. In addition, employees get a 401k retirement plan with a 100% match by the company. The company also provides paid sick days, vacations, income protection, employee discounts, etc. 


  1. Do employees get discounts at Vans? Yes. The employees get about a 50% discount on a full price product and a 30% discount on a product on sale.
  2. What is the hiring age at Vans? To work at Vans a person must be at least 18 years old.
  3. What are the requirements to be a Vans employee? To be an employee at Vans one must have experience in retail, a high school diploma, and satisfy the requirements of the position one applied for. 

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Who owns Vans? – Owners, aquisitions, and Brands

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